What do you think about Near Death Experiences (NDE)? I’m extremely skeptical. Did a young boy see streets of gold, get serenaded by angels, sit in Jesus’ lap, and meet up with dead relatives while in Heaven? Did he find out about his mother’s miscarriage or see moments of Armageddon without ever hearing about them before?

And did God prove himself to be true by giving the family a book publishing deal?

Judge for yourself.

Over time his visions became more believable.  He described Jesus, and he even talked about Armageddon and how God told him his father would fight in the final battle.  Although Todd was a pastor, he says he never talked detail like this with his preschool aged son.

How interesting that the visions this boy saw are exactly like the phrases used in the Bible. I don’t think that means the Bible is true; I think it means that a pastor’s son who was raised in Biblical teaching and who heard his father preach may have known about “streets of gold” and “Armageddon” before magically seeing them during a hospital stay. I’m not even sure a child would use phrases like “streets of gold” without hearing it before. Who says “streets of asphalt?”

What do you think?

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35 thoughts on “Near-Death Experiences: Did a Boy Go to Heaven?”

Saint godless · February 17, 2011 at 6:49 pm

Anesthesia is a hell of a drug. I personally have never “gone under”, but have heard many euphoric stories from people who have. I can only imagine that someone this young could only process these feelings in relation to the Sunday school stories he was taught. The real question should be why did God give him a useless organ that nearly killed him.

Greateighthsin · February 17, 2011 at 6:50 pm

I say that the kid was coerced by the father to say these things. Much like how the anti-gays kid is coerced into saying the things he does. Same problem, just different scenario.

Mega Zeus Thor · February 17, 2011 at 7:25 pm

I think parents can be highly influential.
I think the anecdotal ‘evidence’ in this case is about as reliable as no evidence would be.
I think heaven is made up ‘sky cake’.

Derek · February 17, 2011 at 8:33 pm

How convenient that his father is a pastor. While being near death, his brain would have released a cocktail of chemicals. He no doubt could have hallucinated and keep in mind that he was never completely died. He still had brain waves and the whole lot of bodily functions. He was just very ill. I thought heaven was where you went when you died…? But wait Christians are going to ignore that little inconsistency to fit their expectations.

Keyword… over MONTHS the details became more convincing. Obviously, the story grew as he was questioned by people and he started “remembering” things either deceitfully or through an honest re-imagining of the experience while thinking back on it.

Andrew Hall · February 17, 2011 at 8:45 pm

This is just bullsh*t. I’m sure the kid feels that the experience was “real”. I’ve worked with people who are psychotic and they think a lot of wacky stuff is real.

I thought you were watching My Little Pony?

    Godless Girl · February 19, 2011 at 1:06 am

    Watching My Little Pony became a Near Death Experience, trust me…

NotSoMightyGod · February 18, 2011 at 10:30 am

I think that the boy misinterpreted what he saw. He actually entered Valhalla and mistook Odin for Christ.

Previous posts were right. How a boy would interpret the synapsis firing off and the rush of seratonin that the brain would release under the stress of a near-death situation could certainly lead him to interpret the visions he had in a way that is germane to his life experience. In India, he might have seen Krishna.

I wish that some doctor would pull a blood sample as one of these events is going on and get a sample of the hormonal soup the victims body is generating. Could be very insightful.

This kid will watch ‘Marjoe’ one day and want to kick his parents asses.

K. Syrah · February 18, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Anesthesia IS a hell of a drug, and religious imagery is a symptom of the body shutting the brain down (sinse religious imagery can be very strong).

    phyllis christenson · June 6, 2014 at 8:42 am

    I Wa not reigious but went to church as i was told to do and i saw the light and went thru when my daughter was born and saw jesus and beautiful fall colors around him and when i came back i told my husband and he said i was over druged and then i never talked about it for years.

AMS · February 19, 2011 at 4:18 pm

The first thing the boy mentioned of this supposed visit to heaven was angels singing to him at the hospital. I’m surprised no one realized the obvious- operating teams sometimes play music in the background during surgery. Peaceful music + religious child + anesthesia = angels singing. Bonus points if mom quietly sang hymns or lullabies by his bedside as he was coming out of it.

The rest of the story evolved over time as his credulous parents asked questions that led him to elaborate the story. E.g., “Did you see Jesus?” becomes, “Yes, and I sat in his lap!” Remember, the boy was only three years old. At that age, children can’t distinguish between reality and fiction, and have very powerful imaginations. Thus, he was likely not aware that he was making things up, so he encoded them into memory as actual experiences and still believes they happened.

the sub/dude · February 20, 2011 at 8:32 pm

While I respect your worldly beliefs, how far does that go? Only till you perish shall that work. I have another perspective; here’s our peAce de resistance: doesn’t matter whether you believe or not, pal, you’re STILL gonna croak in our lifelong demise; then, while our mortal bodies are recycled in the grave after our Finite Existence, our indelible soul rises-up to be judged at the General Judgment. Here’s the point I want you to consider before you leave this world: sex in Heaven. Why not?? Can’t God provide everything? Thot so. The Trinity is just as happy you made it to the realm where we can have anything we desire for eternity rather than the realm where we can have absolutely-placebo-nuthin; if Almighty God provides everything else, why not passionate, intimate love make’n for the length of eternity? Besides worship on ‘Sunday’, dunno bout you, but I want that. See, God knew the ol El Diablo would lie like a rug and trick U.S. into believing love make’n wouldn’t be possible in Heaven, so why not git a buncha ho’s and condemn yourself? Lookit Eminem. ‘Sex is just for earth’ you say? WRONG. If you have the desire, anything and everything is possible in the Great Beyond. So dream big, America. God loves that. God loves U.S. to ‘pull Him down outta the sky’ and fantasize about where we’re going. God can and will provide if we have a seed of faith. God will water. I have faith in you, too. God bless you with discernment. -1 Peter 4:8-

PS Type-out on your browser ‘Pascal’s wager’. Be at peace. Enjoy.

    Three Ninjas · February 21, 2011 at 10:11 am

    Pascal’s Wager? I’d never heard of that before. You may have just single handedly destroyed New Atheism 🙁

      getrightwithlord · November 1, 2011 at 11:27 am

      Destroy New Atheism? What is their to destroy? The religion doesn’t make any sence. You live for nothing only to become a nothing? LOL!

Hamish · February 21, 2011 at 5:03 am

I don’t really think the parents deliberately engineered this story for personal gain, although of course it would not have been hard. I think instead, their willing confirmation and intense interest in the kids story was far more effective at getting him to come up with this stuff than coercion would have been. Its not that easy to get a kid to tell a cohesive lie, but it is really easy to get them telling a story they make up, and then accidently steer the make-believe down a specific path. Theres no way a 3 year old came up with the phrase “streets of gold”, he’s obviously heard that from the parents, either before or after the “experience” and has now absorbed the phrase into his telling of the events. I can also imagine real events from his life working their way into the story, as was mentioned with angels singing. The sitting on Jesus’ lap could easily come from sitting on Santa’s or his dad’s lap etc. It seems like the Armageddon stuff came in later. His parents, as believers, would be eager to get information about events they believe are going to happen and could easily have prodded him for details, and he simply told them what they wanted to hear. Kids are often so eager to please that they don’t make any distinction between giving useful and truthful information and simply making something up that produces the desired reaction. Now that the story has been confirmed by everyone around him again and again it is cemented in his mind just as strongly as any actual event. It is highly likely he will go through the rest of his life truly believing he’s met Jesus.

The dead relative is easy to explain, but the only part I can’t immediately work out is the miscarriage bit. It is unlikely he would have known about that beforehand, and he would not have been able to simply guess, as he did with his great grandfather being younger and not having glasses. The way the parents tell it, he simply announced his knowledge about the miscarriage one day. But either they have managed to truly delude themselves in terms of forgetting that they told him about it, or they are not being entirely honest about at least that part of the story.

Would have been much more impressive is if this kid was from somewhere where Christianity was unheard of and his parents had no idea who this “Gezus” guy he kept going on about was.

    Addison · March 2, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    There is one little girl who is an artist who was living in an atheist household and she said God gave her visions of heaven. Her parents are now believers. Google Akiane Kramarik. In my opinion, she is much more believable.

Shockwave Plasma · February 21, 2011 at 8:18 am

These books are not really new :-

Here is one

And my local library has a book on some autistic girl and her prophecies as given by her “facilitated communicator”. All very suspect.

doctor(logic) · February 24, 2011 at 12:16 am

Mistakes Were Made (But Not By Me), by Carol Tavris & Elliot Aronson. Great book. Explains how malleable memory and belief can be. It covers the recovered memory sex abuse scandals in depth. Should be required reading for anyone who will sit on a jury.

I think the kid’s memories and beliefs are modified by feedback from the parents. Leading questions, and that sort of thing. Ask questions long enough, and you’ll get an answer, true or not.

    Godless Girl · February 24, 2011 at 10:33 am

    That would make a very interesting read!

Addison · March 2, 2011 at 5:48 pm

Hi, This is my first time commenting, but what brought me here probably isn’t what brings most people. I want so much to believe this little boy and others that have NDE’s. I guess I kind of have it filed in my part of the brain that goes along with UFO sightings, though. For me, this life is filled with hurt and pain and the journey with a mental illness and I have MANY times sought to exit it in hopes I’d be in a place that heals all of this pain.

I was raised in a Southern Baptist church, but now I live elsewhere and haven’t been to church since my pastor threw his hands up and said “I don’t know what to do with someone like you” when I had attempted suicide. My faith has dwindled into nothingness and while I do see the inconsistencies in Christianity (and the hate-filled Christians that go along with it – not all but most), I can’t help but think it’s all wrong. I am more comfortable believing there is something beyond this world, but am having less and less faith that there is.

As for the little boy…I have to agree it’s a little too coinkydink that his father is a pastor and now he’s had this experience. I am inclined to believe that he has heard his parents talk about heaven and probably even about NDE’s.

I try to have faith. I just want proof to back it up.

    Dan · October 6, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    I just want to tell you that your heart belongs to JESUS and yearns for HIM! If you truly feel it in your heart that there is a Living GOd then it is simple give your life to HIM!! No matter what anyone says it is all about you and your Savior!!! I truly hope you find peace in your life and hope to see you on the other side…God bless you!

yoyo · March 22, 2011 at 2:12 pm

this boy is from God. weather you belive or not heaven is real.
you will be judge some day because you heard heaven is real.
please believe in Jesus. just ask him for forgiveness he will forgive you
whate ever it is.he loves you all.he don’t want you to go to hell that is why he is telling you all this. choose life. please please

    Debbie · March 23, 2011 at 4:11 am

    Just wanted to mention, when i was pregnate 20 years ago
    was going thru bull with my husband getting very upset,and was worried about my baby thinking it was for sure going to be a girl.
    So i prayed one night,and asked god please let my baby be alright,and please show me a sign if he is ok. next day was just resting,and think i was like lucid dreaming…i was awake yet asleep,and i was floading like on cloud in the sky,and heard water
    running as if preparing a bath,and heard baby laughing,and a mans voice which i seemed to know was god,and he said in a deep but calming voice YOU HAVE A FINE SON…I will never forget the first
    time i heard my SON DONNIE laugh everything came back to me as i heard that laugh before he was even born. Just for the record I
    havent been to church for around 35 years JUST SAYIN.
    YEAH MY SON WAS 8 POUNDS,12 OZ HEALTHY. When i asked for a sign I never had that in mine

      Derek · June 25, 2011 at 4:29 am

      You had a dream. You had much anxiety in your life and wanted your child to be a boy. It makes sense for you to have a dream about it. As for your sons laugh being the same, I’m quite sure that it is due to vague recollection or the unreliable human memory re-imagining the event.

      @ yoyo: You’re such a tool. Seriously, the two things I cannot stand about Christianity is the idea of believing in god due to fear of hell and the auto-forgiveness feature of Jesus.

      Dan · October 6, 2012 at 3:49 pm

      I hope you go to church now to thank the LORD for the insight.

Michael LaRocca · April 1, 2011 at 9:55 pm

An NDE experience is a flashback to coming out of the birth canal. Meanwhile, a brain is a terrible thing to wash.

Lou · April 24, 2011 at 11:46 am

If a vote could decide the issue you would be able to declare God is dead in your blog. However popular your point is it has nothing to do with the reality of death and consequences. Death comes to all and consequences are the natural result of choices. It seems a long way off to you now but soon you will be old and then dead. It is only a moment away.

Obviously you have questions concerning possible consequences. Jesus is the way, the truth and the light of the world. He turns away no one that turns to him. Maybe if you are lucky before you end up end in Hell you will call out to Jesus and ask him to save you. Think you can remember to do this when you find yourself dead but still your being goes on? When you are a spirit being shuffled along to the pit by terrible spirits that want to harm you. What will you do? Cry? Sob and give up? Or call out to Jesus?

It would be better to no wait.

    ChristopherTK · April 25, 2011 at 8:35 pm


    Jesus is the way — down a long road to nowhere.
    Jesus is the truth — but only if you accept said truth on faith.
    Jesus is the light of the world — you have our Sun and your “Son” confused.

      Derek · June 25, 2011 at 4:41 am


      Let’s believe in things due to fear. The whole notion that you have to believe in god by having faith in utter bullshit.

      Faith is nothing more than a device to bridge obvious logical gaps in the god argument. It also aids into a sense of exclusivity and empowerment. Not everyone is going to accept unsupported claims and this creates an in-group and an out-group. It also makes people who can’t lie to themselves in order to fill the gap feel like they are somehow better people for throwing logic out the window when it comes to the god argument.

        firmbeliever · July 11, 2011 at 1:09 am

        I have to say that faith it what gets people by. I am not involved in a church north our my children. But my son had a near death experience and it was nothing like what this little boy said. If you say my son is wrong then Tell other family members the same thing and they would if they could that what my son experience is true. all it is a white light and family members that you are close to there. Nothing else, I believe in life after death. but do not go to church. churches are in it for just the money.

        Dan · October 6, 2012 at 3:53 pm

        I pray for you sir…….you have so much hatred. I hope you get rid of that before you stand in judgement!

    Dan · October 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    Thank you for your insight.

Deb · June 17, 2011 at 9:29 am

My take, for what it’s worth, is that something probably did happen with this little boy. It sounds like a typical near-death experience that has been embellished as time goes on, and once a person starts down that road it becomes impossible to separate fact from fantasy. I had a near-death type thing a few years ago, and it was amazing. I used to think death would be unpleasant, but now I don’t worry about that at all. It is nothing like a birth canal thing, by the way. It was also nothing like the streets of gold etc., so despite my faith in Jesus I don’t think it had much religious bearing either.

Addison mentioned he wanted to have proof to back up his faith. There isn’t any that will ever satisfy. If God stood before you and told you “I’m real, ok?”, wouldn’t you convince yourself you had imagined it, or that you needed psychiatric help? You would certainly be told that by someone. Faith is believing without proof, and not everyone can do that.

Percy Emmanuel · October 26, 2012 at 2:17 am

I can’t seem to understand why some people find it so hard to believe in God and the Bible. Most of the skepticism are just based on the fact that the boy is from a Christian home. What is wrong with being from a Christian home? Those who doubt the boy’s story or whatever it is called have ruled away the fact that the boy simply couldn’t have made up stories of his great grandfather who no longer uses glasses or his sister he never knew about. Do you honestly think parents would talk to their 3 year old kid about babies that died in their wombs? Would the kid not be too young to digest such information? We tend to believe in stories that conform to our ideologies and religious doctrines and brush aside those that don’t. How convenient. Maybe if we took time off the skepticism to reflect on the true significance of life, we would reach the ultimate conclusion that indeed there is a God and we are here because he allowed it.

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